Creating Preference Centre In Adobe Campaign

11 Nov 2022

Building an Adobe Campaign web app for the Services and Subscriptions module to manage and grow your audience

Adobe Campaign’s Services and Subscriptions module is an out-of-the-box feature allowing recipients to self-select notification preferences.

You can use the module to manage communication preferences for things like:

We won’t go into more detail about setting up or managing Services and Subscriptions in this blog, but Adobe Experience League has helpful guides to get you started.

Subscriptions are similar to mailing lists with richer information – and one crucial functional difference.

Unsubscribing from a Service is not the same as opting out of all communications.

After unsubscribing, the recipient continues to get other marketing material. Naturally, this makes Subscriptions an excellent tool for targeting audience segments.

Subscribers have asked to receive the content. The preference centre makes it easy for your audience to self-select the content they receive and the frequency they receive it. 

As long as you deliver on the customer’s indicated preferences with tailored communications, you should see fewer recipients unsubscribing, better open rates, and more clicks than mass mailings.

Of course, reaping the benefits of Services depend on giving recipients a way to manage their Subscriptions; otherwise, they’ll make a beeline for the opt-out link. For that, you need a user-friendly preference centre.

Here’s how you can use a web application to put the power of preferences in your recipients’ hands and boost customer retention.

Creating an Adobe Campaign web application to manage subscriber preferences

A web application serves as the user interface for your Services and Subscriptions. It looks like a landing page, functions like a form, and connects to the Adobe Campaign Classic database.

Adobe’s definition is a little drier, albeit more technically accurate:

Adobe Campaign lets you create Web applications to be exposed on a Web platform or an extranet for instance. This enables you to edit data and record information in Adobe Campaign.

Quick side note: Adobe Campaign Standard uses a different system. If you’re an ACS user, contact TAP CXM for advice on real-time preference centres.

Of course, you could use a standard form embedded on a landing page. But the two-way data flow means web applications can look up information from the Adobe Campaign database in real-time.

For preference centres, this means:

  • Forms pre-load user data
  • Users “look up” information, for example selecting preferences from a dropdown list that you control in the back end
  • Content changes based on the user’s rights
  • Language adapts to the user’s settings
  • More flexibility in field positioning
  • Adaptive rendering
  • Conditional fields 

So, how do you go about creating a web app to serve as your preference centre?

Web applications have three components: content fields, a back-end workflow, and a graphical user interface (GUI).

One tip before we dive in: keep preference centres simple. They’re supposed to make the user’s life easier, not confound them too many choices.

1. Content fields

Adobe Campaign web applications give you a lot of flexibility. As well as the standard fields you’d expect in a preference centre (name, salutation, email, and a list of checkboxes), you can surface a range of user-specific data.

For example, you can use a variable field to show users how many loyalty points they have. You can add a Captcha, insert a file upload form, or enrich user data using hidden fields called “constants”. 

Most importantly, web apps link seamlessly to Subscription services.

Users can subscribe or unsubscribe to Services with a single click. Not only is this incredibly easy for recipients, but it also reduces the risk of global opt-outs while remaining GDPR compliant.

To display a Subscription checkbox, click Advanced controls then Subscription.

Choose the relevant Service from the dropdown list. You can customise the checkbox name in the Label field.

It looks like this on the user’s side:

Adobe Campaign Preference centre example

2. Back-end workflow

A web application’s workflow determines the user’s experience. In the context of preference centres, keeping the workflow concise is a good idea.

Here’s an example of a workflow that pre-loads user data (including preferences), uses responsive HTML code to display a good-looking GUI, commits the code to the database, then displays a confirmation page.

Adobe campaign preference centre workflow

It looks straightforward – and in many ways, it is. With a little TAP Academy training, you can create your own web application workflows for all kinds of use cases.

3. Visual front-end

High-quality HTML code is a crucial part of deploying a web application. This determines:

  • What the user sees
  • User experience
  • How the web app adapts between browsers and devices
  • Mobile responsiveness
  • Branding and aesthetics

We write the code for most clients’ Adobe Campaign Classic web applications. We’ve done it thousands of times and know how to turn a simple web app into a rewarding customer experience.

Getting the code right is crucial for web app stability. It also ensures the user’s information arrives in the database in real time and doesn’t get sidetracked in cyberspace along the way.

How do users access the preference centre?

Once your web application is up and running, there are a few ways users can find it.

Typically, brands will include a link in email footers, The link contains an encrypted user identifier which enables the web app to preload existing user data from the Adobe Campaign database. 

Remember that it’s good practice to differentiate preference centres from global unsubscribe links, so users understand their options.

Another option is to add a link from your website to the preference centre. This works when there’s enough information to match the user with the Adobe Campaign database. So we recommend putting the link in a subscriber-only area of the site.

Need help building your preference centre in Adobe Campaign?

We can help with that. TAP CXM is a team of customer experience specialists helping companies make the most of their marketing technologies, including Adobe Campaign and the entire Experience Cloud.

Whether you need an experienced implementation partner, technical support, or Adobe Campaign training, contact TAP CXM to speak with a specialist.

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